Sit-ups (torso lift)
Sit-ups mainly target your abdominal muscles. This type of sit-up has a very little motion range, but don’t be fooled, it’s harder than it looks. Many gymnasts that try this kind of sit-up will feel a burning sensation in their abdominal muscles.
The shape of this type of sit-up is a very useful when explaining certain types of gymnastic skill like; front layouts or hollow position. When a coach needs to explain to the gymnast to push forward with their torso in certain skills they can refer to this drill. This drill also requires that the gymnast has a flat lower back when executing the sit-ups. The flat lower back is also used in a wide range of gymnastic skills; handstands, cartwheels and handsprings.
- Tighter and stronger abdominal muscles.
- Understand using your torso.
- Understand flat lower back position.
It is very important to have the correct positions in each stage for this drill to be effective!
Start by lying on the floor with bent knees, hands next to your ears and arms wide out to the sides. Your lower back should be completely flat on the ground. If you have problems getting your lower back flat then suck in at your belly and tilt your hips. Again, it is important that you have this position to start with before lifting your torso.
Lift your torso while keeping your head in the neutral position. As you lift your torso tilt it forward and do not bend your neck or head at any point.
You should be lifting and lowering your torso at a slow speed. It should take 1-2 seconds to lift and 1-2 seconds to lower. Repeat as many times as needed.
Stage 1 – Setup
Stage 2 – Torso Lift
Common MistakesCoaches teach gymnasts how to do skills correctly, but most gymnasts learns how to perform the skill correctly when coaches corrects their mistakes. This is not wrong, this is actually how gymnasts learn. This being said, it is very important that coaches corrects mistakes all the time. If a gymnast continues doing the same mistake over and over then they will be good at doing that drill with that mistake and have a difficult time later correcting it.
- Always correct mistakes
- Correct the first mistake you see the gymnast do (even if it is before the actually drill, i.e. the gymnast forgets to stand tall with arms over their head)
- Correct only one thing (sometimes two if they are related)